Estate planning is an excellent way to visualize the type of future you want. Throughout your plan, you can incorporate details that describe your final wishes and how you want your assets distributed.
Updating your estate plan is just as important as having one. Throughout the years, changes in your life may affect your original plan. Proactively making updates will preserve your legacy just how you want it.
A periodic review
A periodic review will suffice to keep your plan updated. According to U.S. News, experts recommend reading through your plan every five to seven years. However, if you have substantial changes in your life, you will want to make immediate changes. Some examples of events that may impact your plan include the following:
- Births of your children or grandchildren
- Marriage, divorce or remarriage
- Deaths of plan participants
- Substantial increases to your assets
- Moving across state lines
- Changes to tax laws
Overlooking updates or neglecting to make them right away can have detrimental effects. For example, if you get divorced and later remarried but still have your ex as the plan beneficiary, your current spouse may not have the legal right to any of your assets. Timely updates can keep your money where you want it to be.
A brief description
Depending on the types of changes you make to your plan, you may want to update your family. If they know who the beneficiaries are and who to rely on for critical roles in the execution of your estate, they can all have peace of mind. Your decision to keep everyone in the loop may also help to prevent estate disputes and familial conflict after your death.
Writing an estate plan and making sure it stays updated can seem overwhelming at times. Working with an attorney may give you the support you need to design a plan that will meet your needs and the needs of those you love.